29 evacuees now discharged after treatment for food poisoning

Marje Pelayo   •   November 6, 2019   •   555

Earthquake victims in Makilala town, North Cotabato suffered abdominal pains followed by vomiting after eating pastel for lunch on Monday, November 4, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – All 29 victims of food poisoning in Makilala, Cotabato were already discharged from the hospital.

According to the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC), evacuees from Barangay Malabuan suffered stomach pains followed by vomiting after eating pastel that was part of the donated food packages in the evacuation center.

To prevent the incident from happening again, authorities improved security measures at checkpoints to ensure the quality of food being delivered to the evacuees.

The agency also called on all donors to make sure that food donations are properly prepared and packed to prevent spoilage.

“Hindi naman po natin masisisi ang kung sino man dito sa nangyari (We can’t blame anyone for what happened),” Timbal said.

“But we will do our best to ensure (that this won’t happen again),” he added.

Meanwhile, the national government is sending additional funds for the rehabilitation of earthquake-affected towns in Mindanao.

Earlier on Wednesday (November 6), Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana together with Health Secretary Francisco Duque III and Interior Secretary Eduardo Año visited Kidapawan City Provincial Capitol to check on the situation.

Lorenzana said local chief executives are asking for additional budget as they have already used up most of their calamity fund.

Apart from rehabilitation, the national government also provided for the relocation of the victims who lost their homes from the earthquake. – MNP (with details from Harlene Delgado)

Duterte visits, vows aid to quake victims in North Cotabato

Robie de Guzman   •   December 30, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – President Rodrigo Duterte on Monday assured continued support for residents in North Cotabato towns that were devastated by earthquakes between October to December 15 that shook parts of Mindanao.

“I assure you that the government will continue to help all of you until you are able to get back on your feet and start anew with renewed hope and greater capacity to lead dignified lives,” Duterte said in a speech during his visit to M’lang, North Cotabato.

Aside from meeting quake victims, the chief executive also distributed food packs as well as financial grants to residents from earthquake-stricken towns in the province.

North Cotabato is among the provinces heavily damaged by the series of earthquakes that jolted parts of the Mindanao region.

Last October, the province of Cotabato suffered three succeeding temblors – magnitude 6.3 on October 16, magnitude 6.6 on October 29 and magnitude 6.5 on October 31.

On November 1, a magnitude 5.0 quake struck Makilala, Cotabato just a few hours after a magnitude 5.5 tremor hit waters off Sarangani province.

The latest was a magnitude 6.9 temblor that hit Davao del Sur and shook neighboring areas on December 15.

The earthquakes displaced thousands of residents who are now staying in evacuation shelters.

Duterte said he has ordered the National Housing Authority (NHA) to fast-track the setting up of housing units for those who were rendered homeless by the recent quakes.

The president expressed hope that the assistance he extended will make the victims feel the warmth and joy of the season despite their current situation. He also apologized for not visiting them sooner.

“I condole with you. I share your grief. Sa totoo lang, kaya ako andito, pinilit ko, and I must apologize, I am very sorry that I couldn’t be here immediately. Marami hong problema sa Maynila,” he said. – RRD (with details from Correspondent Rosalie Coz)

Authorities end retrieval ops for earthquake victims in Magsaysay, Davao del Sur

Marje Pelayo   •   November 22, 2019

DAVAO DEL SUR, Philippines – Disaster authorities have decided to end the search and retrieval operations for earthquake victims in the town of Magsaysay.

According to the Office of the Civil Defense (OCD) Region XI, experts from the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (PHIVOLCS) and the Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB) declared that the situation on the ground has become risky for rescuers thus they opted to stop the operation.

“There is no way to conduct retrieval operations in the area for those three missing individuals considering that the area has become very dangerous for the conduct of the operation,” explained OCD XI Operations Head Francis Irag in his local dialect.

“Up until now, soil quality is already poor aside from small aftershocks that are being experienced in the area so we need to consider the safety of our responders,” he added.

The official said they have already talked to the victims’ kin about their decision.

“We make them understand that there is no way to recover the remains of their loved ones because the ground situation in the area has become dangerous,” Irag said.

“The site is now their resting area. They accepted the fact with ease,” he added.

Meanwhile, authorities are now planning as to where, how, and when they would start the recovery program for residents hard-hit by the earthquakes.

Based on records acquired by the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC), more than 22,000 structures including houses, schools and hospitals in Region XI were damaged by the tremors.

“Initially, one of our activities is we already have conducted site validation and assessment in proposed relocation sites Magsaysay and the Magsaysay Municipali office already have at least 10 relocation sites and validation is underway,” Irag assured.

On Saturday (November 23), all concerned agencies and local government units in the region will hold a response committee meeting to discuss the recovery plan for municipalities affected by the earthquakes. — MNP (with reports from Janice Ingente)

Heavy rains, strong winds rip tents at Makilala, Cotabato evacuation sites

Robie de Guzman   •   November 12, 2019

 Villagers rest at a makeshift shelter in the earthquake-hit town of Makilala on Mindanao island, Philippines, 01 November 2019. EPA-EFE/CERILO EBRANO

Strong winds and heavy rains destroyed several makeshift tents at two evacuation centers where some of the evacuees in Makilala, North Cotabato are staying following the recent earthquakes that hit Mindanao.

According to a CNEWS report by Raymond Octobre on Tuesday, evacuees endured thunderstorms on Monday afternoon while staying in their temporary shelters in Makilala Central Elementary School.

A cellphone video taken by one of the evacuees showed makeshift tents being destroyed and pulled apart by strong winds and heavy rains coupled with ice pellets.

At the Santos Land evacuation center in Poblacion, Makilala, several tents erected using tarpaulin and bamboo wood were also ripped apart by heavy rains that lasted for almost an hour.

Sheryl Orbita, acting Municipal Administrator of Makilala, assured no one was injured while an individual was brought to a hospital after falling unconscious.

Orbita added that evacuees affected by the heavy rains have been given assistance.

More than 50 families from the Santos Land evacuation center were also transferred to a temporary shelter in Makilala National High School while around 100 other families opted to remain in the area.

“Dinalhan naman din sila ng pagkain doon na luto na tsaka mga damit kasi nabasa yung iba may mga damit doon sa nililipatan nila,” Orbita said.

The National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) said that as of November 12, there are 20 evacuation centers catering to more than 4,700 families in Makilala.

Overall, there are 69 evacuation centers serving a total of 53,612 quake-hit families in Davao and Soccsksargen regions. – RRD (with details from Correspondent Raymond Octobre)

REACH US

The Philippine Broadcast Hub

UNTV, 915 Barangay Philam,

EDSA, Quezon City M.M. 1104

(+632) 8396-8688 (Tel)

info@untv-newsandrescue.com (General inquiries)

ABOUT UNTV

UNTV is a major TV broadcast network with 24-hour programming. An Ultra High Frequency station with strong brand content that appeal to everyone, UNTV is one of the most trusted and successful Philippine networks that guarantees wholesome and quality viewing experience.